Authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive are the three parenting styles identified by Diane Baumrind. Each one of these parenting styles has a certain effect on children’s behavior. The authoritarian parenting style seems to be the harshest, in my opinion, these parents expect their children to be obedient without question and punish misbehavior (usually physically). These parents are the ones who think “because I said so” is a good enough reason for obedience, they also tend to be distant, no communication with their children, and unresponsive. Their toddlers disciplined in this style have been known to be anxious, withdrawn and unhappy; I imagine that they’re always scared. Lack of social skills has been linked to authoritarian style parents. A benefit to this parenting style is that kids disciplined in this manner who live poorly show a better developmental outcome than peers with permissive parents. I find it so harsh because all I think of just by reading the description of an authoritarian parent is, “do they love their child?”. A child will not learn from being told: “because I said so”. They obey because they’re being taught to obey but they don’t know why.

Unlike authoritarians, authoritative parents are the most reasonable who really show their love for their children. They enforce limits and set high but reasonable and realistic standards for their kids. Even though they like to enforce and set standards, they also encourage independence and communication, they talk about the rules and explain them if their children have questions. It’s easier to follow rules when you understand them, even when the parents are not around. Authoritative parents are warm and supportive; they respect their children and their opinions. These kids are happy and responsible compared to their peers. Higher performance in school and independence comes from this parenting style. I would like to have a happy and independent child than unhappy and withdrawn, which is why I like this style the most. I relate to it in which I set rules for my four-year-old daughter and unlike my mom who would have said “because I said so” and some other colorful language, if my daughter asks me why she needs to do something, I sit down with her and explain why. It isn’t always this way, but I try, and she doesn’t always learn right away, but I wouldn’t dare hit her, and she remains happy.

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Another least favorite, Permissive parents, which can be broken down into two, permissive-indulgent/neglectful. These types of parents do not enforce the few rules that they make and allow their kids to control their own behavior and make decisions for themselves. Children raised in the permissive-indulgent are the most immature and dependent, yet their parents are warm and supportive. I think that by letting them do what they want without restrictions, they feel they’re showing them love which won’t work out too well in the end. On the other hand, permissive-neglectful parents are exactly what they sound like. They lack warmth and they’re not interested in or don’t support their child’s development, so they let them do whatever they choose. This style brings about drinking issues, poor school performance, and delinquent behavior. Nothing good can come of this style.

I hate to admit it, but my mom was authoritarian. If she would ask me to clean my room and I didn’t do it, I would get physically punished. I have terrible memories of her and not too many good ones. It’s true that people will only remember the bad in people and not the good. I had a huge dislike for meat as a kid and I had to eat it because she said so or else her colorful language would come out to greet me along with physical punishment. My grandma ended up raising us because of her ways, they were a combination of both permissive styles and sure enough, they show no self-control, are immature, were horrible in school, delinquent behavior throughout their lives, and drug-abuse as well.

In conclusion, I do believe in the effects of these parenting styles on children given that my brothers both turned out the way they did. I, on the other hand, I don’t believe that my grandparent’s permissive style affected me, but my mom’s authoritarian style did; I was the oldest, so I experienced it longer than my brothers did, I think that’s why. Through my adolescence until now, I appear to have less self-confidence and self-reliance compared to others. I’m very unsure about my decisions, more withdrawn than others (although, not as an adult) and still very anxious about everything. In the end, I identify more with the authoritative style because of the way I turned out to be, I wouldn’t want those things for my daughter.

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